It is inevitable. For some of us it takes half a lifetime to figure out who we are. We sort it all out. We come out. We tell the entire family and everyone we know that we are transgender. Finally! It is happening. Transition begins. Up on the pink cloud we go, where everything is new and shiny. Experiencing life for the first time really. It is a surreal feeling. Not really knowing what lies ahead. But it is inevitable. At some point, we all hit a wall. We all hit many walls to be exact.
“To be honest I am not sure where ‘there’ really is, but it is certainly not where I am right now.”
Sometimes I feel like I am stuck in the mud, just spinning my wheels. Though my former existence seems so far away in the rearview mirror, there are so many aspects of that old person’s life that I am still living. It seems like to the rest of the world, everything should be okay with me now that my “trans thing” is out there. I wish it were that simple. Today I find myself wondering if I will ever really get there. To be honest I am not sure where “there” really is, but it is certainly not where I am right now. For so long I felt like things were moving forward. I was progressing. My body was changing in all these wonderful ways. I could actually look in the mirror at times. My family is getting better with my name and pronouns. Everyone is adjusting. I know I have so much I should be happy about, but I feel stuck. I have most certainly hit a wall.
It is not my first time hitting the proverbial wall. We all go through it. There are so many roadblocks along the way when we transition. In the beginning it may have been crippling dysphoria. It could have been a bigoted relative who made life difficult or maybe your first run in with a radical feminist or a religious extremist. They all seem to think they are experts, though in reality they know nothing about being transgender. Either way you get through such roadblocks. Each step of the way you have to fight. You become a transgender expert by way of survival. You battle with your doctors to make sure you are getting the proper treatment. You fight with your job just to have the same rights and respect that your peers enjoy. Some of us have partners and children who are in a sense transitioning with us and we need to support them just as they support us. You seem to get through it all, but in reality it never ends. It is always something.
“I struggle with the reality of wanting to drop everything to start a new life as the real me.”
The wall in front of me today is complicated. I struggle with the reality of wanting to drop everything to start a new life as the real me. I want to do everything I was never allowed to do before. I want to indulge the “teenager” part of me that now exists. At the same time I struggle with the reality of loving my family and not wanting to lose them. I often feel selfish for wanting to take the journey at all. I worry about hurting those I love, the ones who have supported me through all of this. I feel guilty for having these thoughts. The problem is for me at this moment I feel there is no plan. I am no longer progressing. I feel like an incomplete experiment. I feel like half of a person, or better yet, two separate halves of a person and they don’t seem to really like each other.
Could I really have it all? My therapist tells me all the time that I can. She tells me I can experience life and have the career I want while being a good partner to my wife and parent to my children. She says it is possible to have all of it, but I am not sure I believe her. Maybe that is my problem?
As I think about all the walls I have climbed just to get where I am today, I wonder about it. Maybe it is possible? Some walls are bigger than others. The one I am facing right now may be one of the bigger ones. What I do know is that the answers to my questions lay somewhere beyond that wall. All I can do is believe that it is possible to have it all and just break through it.
Stay safe and keep fighting for all of us!
Love and peace,